Florida, South Florida, South Carolina move home games ahead of Ian

The college football schedule is changing by the hour as hurricane Ian heads to the Gulf Coast as South Florida and East Carolina, which had been slated to play in Tampa on Saturday night, will instead play in Boca Raton. The game will now kick off at 2:30 p.m. at Florida Atlantic’s stadium.

Florida’s home football game against Eastern Washington scheduled for Saturday has been moved to Sunday because of Hurricane Ian, which is expected to hit the state’s southwest coast on Wednesday.

The Gators and Eagles will kick off at noon in Gainesville shortly before NFL games around the country. Playing the game guarantees Eastern Washington a $750,000 payday, a significant revenue source for a school with an athletic budget around $17.5 million.

The University of Florida canceled classes and all student-related activities Wednesday through Friday in anticipation of Ian’s predicted landfall. Ian tore into western Cuba on Tuesday as a major hurricane, with nothing to stop it from intensifying into a catastrophic Category 4 storm before it hits Florida, where officials ordered 2.5 million people to evacuate before it crashes ashore Wednesday.

Several other sporting events in the South are expected to be affected by Ian. South Carolina’s home game with South Carolina State has been moved from Saturday to Thursday night due to Ian’s track. South Carolina athletic director Ray Tanner announced the switch Tuesday.